Final search begins to locate survivors of AP boat tragedy
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Last Updated: Sunday, January 31, 2010, 15:43
Eluru: Authorities on Sunday launched a final search operation to locate survivors and those missing, if any, after 11 pilgrims met a watery grave when an overcrowded boat capsized in Godavari river in West Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh yesterday.

"We resumed the search operation in early morning. As per our reports there are no more missing people. The search operation will continue till evening," Eluru Range DIG Mahesh Bhagwath told a news agency over phone, adding expert divers from Navy were involved in the rescue efforts.

The country-made boat ferrying over 50 persons overturned in the river near Biyyaputeppa village, about 120 km from here.

Rescuers recovered 11 bodies including that of five women and five children (in the age-group of 3 to 50) from the river.

Bhagwath said the boat was meant for fishing and was supposed to carry only 15 persons.

He denied reports that some persons drowned after they got trapped in fishing nets spread in the river. The main reason for the tragedy was overcapacity of the boat, Bhagwath pointed out.

The victims, mostly belonging to fishermen's families from Upputeru and nearby villages were going to have a holy dip at a temple in Antarvedi when the mishap occurred.

However, 40 persons managed to swim to safety with the help of villagers.


First Published: Sunday, January 31, 2010, 15:43

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